Swap-bot Time: April 23, 2017 12:55 am


Date Joined: May 19, 2016
Last Online: April 22, 2017
Birthday: June 10, 1977
Country: Germany
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My Etsy Store

About Me

My application for German citizenship has been processed and I am now a genuine, certified, beer-swilling, tree-hugging, socks-and-sandals-wearing German. Hooray! I retain my British nationality, too, so don't worry: the football-hooligan, binge-drinking, culinarily-challenged and over-hyphenated side of my nature remains.

I joined this site because I make mail art, and I need people to send it to! I hope to receive mail art or goodies with which to make mail art in return. I am also a real life scientist with a laser and everything. Some of my hobbies:

**Mail art

**Pottery, including kiln-building

**Reading aloud

**Learning languages (including new curse words)

**Ornithology ( I cannot say which bird I love the most. At the top of the list are: graylag goose, herring gull, raven, pigeon, blackbird, cormorant, common redshanks, greenfinch, albatross, robin, Eurasian curlew... actually, all of them. I wish I could lay their eggs.) Birds! But not birdcages.

**Local tourism (within cycling distance)

**Drinking whisky and eating cheese

**Cross-dressing (I welcome gender-subversive images but despise transphobia)

**Collecting fossils

**Visiting art museums

I'm really interested in hearing about you: if you're not sure what to write, why not tell me about that great project you keep meaning to start/finish? You never know: it might give you the push you need to realise it! I am always interested in your local industries or handicrafts, especially ceramic and textile art. People tend to think their region has nothing to offer. I have heard this many times from my fellow Europeans, and I think USAians are the same. I'm sure you're wrong! And maybe this is your chance to find out more about your culture, whatever you define "yours" to be. My current town, for example, is a good place for tattooing and knotting (it's a seedy port town) as well as beer brewing.

Other regions in which I have lived were variously (locally) famous for: wine, beer, pewter, love-spoons, papercut silouhettes, coal-carving, lace-making, embroidery, spinning, yodeling, horse-breeding, rope-making, earthernware/fayence and dyeing. Yet in every one of these places, people denied that there was anything interesting going on in the region.

I once met a young man who said his tiny, conservative Bavarian village was the most boring place on earth (and I tend to agree), and it later turned out that he was was a Vorplattler (professional thigh-slapper) competing at world-class level! Ah, those Bavarians! So what are the people of your region up to behind closed doors?

I don't collect anything! No, no, that would just be accumulating stuff. Ahem. So, things I am definitely not collecting (cough, cough) are: images of craftspeople and their workshops, traditions and istorical sites, feminist/womanist stuff, your interesting anecdotes, puns and sayings. If you send me those things, I will be very happy and will by no means be accumulating them, stroking them and giving them nicknames. Nor will I put them in tins and sort them into piles. No way. That would just be materialistic and silly. Which I am not. Glad we established that!

Favorite Books

Dictionaries, encyclopediae, maps, blueprints, the entire non-fiction section of the library.

Swappers with special needs...

I make almost everything out of scrap and leftovers, which I think gives it a rough-and-rugged recycling charm. If you are in a swap with me and have special needs, be they sensory, OCD, whatever, let me know and I will be glad make your post out of fresh, smooth, new paper. If you are visually impaired, please let me know and it will be my pleasure to make you a textured card or one with strong visual contrast.

I use vegetable-based glues and mineral-based pigment, but I occasionally use leather, feathers or wool. If you prefer me to make something vegetarian/vegan, I will be happy to do so.

I want to make you happy, so I will be delighted to accept your needs unquestioningly.

Favorite Crafts

Ceramics, recycling, papercutting, printmaking, drawing and sketching, collage, calligraphy, bookbinding, embroidery, woodburning, assembling junk, building giant evil lasers with which to take over the world, you name it! Favourite textures: Paper, textile, wood, leather, stone, feathers, fur, rusty iron, peeling paint, brick, string.

Secret career wish

I l o v e being a physicist. But I secretly wish I were one of those people that make maquettes for museums. I would be dead good at that.

I would also love to be a cheese-maker, a whisky distiller or a dry-stone waller.

If I could have one wish granted, I think I would like to experience life in a rock pool.

I have a huge weakness for...

Dutch/Flemish still-life, trompe l'oeil and vanitas paintings of the "Golden" century. Especially those with tulips, half-peeled lemons and oysters. Do you know the ones I mean?

Zoological and botanical collections, like insects pinned on cards, owl pellets, birds' eggs, pressed seaweed, wasps' nests, shed skins and the like. Xylotheks - wood libraries, like the Schildbach xylothek in Kassel.

European romanesque and gothic Catholic art: painting, sculpture, architecture, reliquaries, psalters. Slavic and Byzantine orthodox Christian art. Islamic calligraphy and tesselations. Religious art in general.

Arctic and seamen's art: scrimshaw, bone and antler sculpture, toys and clothing made of sealskin or fish leather, bone ships, knotwork, beading and ropework.

Ceramics ancient and modern. Art, traditional, domestic, industrial, medicinal, achitectural, brickmaking: all of it! Kiln building, glaze recipes, techniques and tools, potters: anything! Turkey, Ecuador, Denmark, Iran, Mali, China, Pakistan: Everywhere!

Textiles: Indonesian batik, Central European Blaudruck (indigo), Hebridean tweed, Baltic/Belarussian woven belts, Japanese woodblock print, Tyrolean felt.

Scientific images: microscopy, MRI, x-ray, diffraction patterns, circuit diagrams, the periodic table, telescopy, seismographs, cloud chamber patterns.

Special requests

LANGUAGE: Please write to me in English, German, Dutch, Afrikaans or French. If you write your return address in a non-latin script, please use your very best and simplest lettering. I will copy it verbatim, you see.

POSTCARDS: I like a postcard best if it is stamped and written on. If I join a blank postcard swap, it's because I overlooked the "blank" part, so please feel free to write on it!

LESS IS MORE: Unless I join a goodies swap, please don't send me anything but the swap item(s), and possibly a note. I know you mean well, but my drawer is full!

BUT I STILL LIKE GOODIES: If I I join a goodies swap: please don't send me anything to eat or drink, no cosmetics or jewellery and nothing scented. I love scrap paper and recycling. Please send me your old, sun-damaged, torn or foxed paper, card, envelopes, used stamps and old office supplies (not scrapbooking paper from the craft shop). If you think it's too old or damaged or grubby or creased for a swap and it's at the bottom of your "can't bring myself to throw it away" drawer: please send it to me, you will make my day! Don't be shy, I won't mark you down! Please don't send me plastic unless it's something you would otherwise throw out. I like to be biodegradeable.


I thought I'd put a little something here for my fellow stamp swappers. Science, technology and medicine, please! I love stamps with a limited colour palette and a strong graphical component. Often the definitives of republics fit that description (Poland and the Czech Republic have lovely definitives), as well as Europa/CEPT and human rights motifs, but I'm not keen on portrait stamps or photographic ones. I like bridges, oil rigs, oil refineries... anything like that. I don't like Christmas and Easter stamps. I'll repeat that, because I've been getting a lot of them: I don't like Christmas and Easter stamps. I love the USA pottery and mineral stamps and the Dutch Luchtpost-bicycle. Newfound love: Singaporean "vanishing trades".

In other words: please send me your engineering, medicine and science!

I don't send out "third Reich" stamps. I know some people like to collect them and I understand that. Sorry!

Postage times

Deutsche Post is brilliant! (Thanks, Postie!) However, the world is big. Average times (from my Postcrossing experience): Germany - 2 days; BeNeLux and Austria - 5 days; Finland, France, Poland - 9 days; USA (city) - 15 days; USA (rural) - 21 days; Hong Kong and Taiwan - 16 days; China (city) - 24 days; China (rural) - 60 days; Moscow and St. Petersburg - 12 days; West Russia and the Urals - 35 days; Russia East of the Urals - 60 days and upwards; India - 40 days.

Thank you

Thank you very much in advance for taking the time to read this and think about what might please me. Be assured that your post will make me smile!

Yours sincerely, Sonia (SuMay)


camelsamba rated for HCS&I: Spring! on Apr 20, 2017
Comment: Thank you for the great postcard - minimalist but so expressive. My son was taking photos for magnolias today for his school newspaper :^)
Comment: Thank you so much!! I love everything in this package!!! The key is fabulous!
Response: That's really satisfying to hear. Thank you for the heart, Kittin!
Nevermore rated for Ugly Bug Ball on Apr 11, 2017
Comment: Thank you so much for this gorgeous invitation. I shall RSPV as soon as possible!
Response: Esteemed Madam, The ancient order of woodlice is honoured by your response, and wishes you a safe journey to the ball. Lightfoot Swallowtail
sweepinguptheashes rated for HMPC: Profile Postcard on Apr 4, 2017
Comment: Oh Sonia! I f***ing love it! Thank you soooo much. LMT stands for licsenced massage therapist. The mermaid is extremely happy on land, thank you for asking! I hope you had luck with the interviews. Thanks again for swapping!
Response: I'm very glad you like it so much! Thank you for the heart.
wolfeagle rated for Postage Stamp PC on Mar 28, 2017
Comment: Thank you. I love the simplicity of this postcard. I'm going to have to find a magnifying glass to read it though. The eyes aren't what they used to be. ;D
Response: Thank you for your positive feedback and for the heart. It's always useful to hear which aspects were particularly pleasing (or not): it's my motor to change and improve. Sorry about the tiny writing. I love to cram in as much text as possible, because for me, mail art is primarily mail, and that means lots of writing! I'll try to remember next time and either type or write in block capitals. See you next swap!
susieq11 rated for Mail Art: Spring on Mar 21, 2017
Comment: Wow!!!!! Your envelope is soooo beautiful and creative! How lucky I am to receive from you!!! It is really amazing art! : ) Thank you for the postcards and your lovely note as well. I have a friend who is in Aix-en-Provence right now! Enjoy your trip to Italy!!!!! Thank you so much again!!!
Response: Thanks for your effusive praise: I'm very glad you liked the things I sent. Aix is lovely, but I prefer nearby Marseille, which is more lively and heterogeneous. My trip to Tuscany was fabulous. Art, food, nature, architecrure, wine, gelato and lively people. Ciao!
Comment: If I could give you a 10 and 100 hearts I would! Your artwork is beautiful and it was really interesting to read. Thank you so much! :)
Response: I'm glad you liked it, Wicked Glitter. Thanks for the heart!
Kdguard rated for Beachcombing inventory on Mar 17, 2017
Comment: Wow, interesting things you find. I've never found any of those on my beach.
Response: Good, I'm glad! who wants to find the remains of war? Thanks for your rating, and happy beachcombing!
MichelleGG2 rated for WIYM: Creative Snail Mail on Mar 8, 2017
Comment: Thank you for the lovely handmade purim card! The enclosed note card was beautiful.
Response: You're welcome. Thank you for the heart.
kweandee rated for Send a Naked Map Postcard #2 on Mar 6, 2017
Comment: Great mapcard...Thanks hun! :)
Response: Was it the steamer line? If so, that was quick!
Comment: Thank you very much for such a great handmade PC! I like all those circles, etc.
Response: I'm glad you liked it. Thank you for the heart.
littlemissme84 rated for Map Postcards #32 on Feb 27, 2017
qbee rated for FCMA: Mail Art Alphabet "B" on Feb 23, 2017
Comment: thank you, Debbie
mrsD rated for Lots of Stamps on an Envelope #3 on Feb 23, 2017
Comment: gorgeous rainbow stamps on a gorgeous envelope! no worries everything was wonderful! thanks for a great swap with fun postcards and stamps too xo
Response: Phew, that's a relief. Thank you for the heart.
mgallardo68 rated for WIYM: exciting news! on Feb 19, 2017
Comment: Love your postcard and what an exciting adventure you're about to have! I can't wait to read more about the experience!! Enjoy it, I know you love new things!! Thank you for a detailed explanation and all the art mail in the PC! Hugs and Good luck!!
Response: Thanks for your rating, Mariá. I can't wait!
deesides rated for What Are You Reading? on Feb 16, 2017
Comment: Thank you for the gorgeous card! Your handwriting is so tiny yet beautiful and readable, I am in awe! Interesting books, too, I also have multiple books at hand at the same time :D
Response: Thanks for your rating. Yes, I think most of us are parallel readers. The Penrose is quite a slog, but it's full of all sorts of great insights.
Comment: I get super excited about receiving stamp swaps...this lovely envelope however went above and beyond. It's in my top favorite swaps I've received!! 💜💛💙💚❤️ This envelope was such a joy to see in my mailbox!! I adore the map punches and the adorable ink stamps used to decorate and even a crab sticker!!! Love love love....and that's just the outside!! Now the inside was just an adventure to be had!!! Not only did you personalize the selection of stamps, the two postcards that you included were just so neat!!! I loved reading about the Austrian central post offices small toy sorting machine!!! (for children?! Bah!!) if I ever make it to Vienna, this place is on my to do list!!!! Thank you for sharing your postal nerdness with me!! And for sending such a lovely swap 💕
Response: You are very kind, thank you for your effusive praise! I'm very glad you enjoyed the stamps I chose for you. 7 doesn't occur often, does it?
sarah210 rated for Ecrivons une carte postale, no. 2 on Feb 15, 2017
Comment: This was a beautiful card and I loved your handwriting! Thank you so much!
Response: Merci à toi, aussi!
mrcrow rated for Winter bird count on Feb 13, 2017
Comment: Thank you for all of the pictures to go with the names :)
Response: You're most welcome. Those great-tailed grackles of yours are just gorgeous! I can imagine that they strut around with great self-confidence and grackle amongst themselves. Thank you for the heart.

Rating Overview

Overall Hearts Stars Hosted
5.0000 227 49 50
Completed Fives Threes Ones
237 235 0 0
Type 1 Type 2 Type 3 Uncategorized
7 95 135 0
View all


NorthStar07 on Apr 11, 2017:

Hello Sonia😊 Yayyy I'm soo happy that it reached you! I thought it was lost.... Oh cool! I can't wait to receive it🌼 Much love ❤Take care💋 -Vaishnavi xoxo

phillaine on Apr 3, 2017:

for the wonderful surprise package you sent me. It was very touching to receive with your kind note, and absolutely fantastic! First, your envelope made me smile right away, and I love the stamps (of all kinds) that you used on it. The washi is great, I know exactly what (and who) I'll use the ribbon for, and the GORGEOUS envelope is so perfect it's inspired a new craft for me. Thanks also for the very cool mailing labels, and my ABSOLUTE FAVORITE thing is your amazing hand-carved stamp images. WOW! I really like your style, and you've got a great artistic talent and skills. Thank you for sharing all of this with me, and most of all for your kindness and caring in thinking of me. Have a wonderful day! ♥

madebymimi on Mar 18, 2017:

Hi Sonia, thank you so much for the 'poisson' mail you sent me! It's wonderful and really inspiring. It made my day. Best wishes, Michelle x

sabbysteg on Feb 4, 2017:

Thank you for the card.

beckra on Feb 3, 2017:

Hello, Sonia--Oh, thank you, thank you for the two wonderful pieces of mail! I love the textures of the grey piece, and the visual poem is one of my all-time favorite things I've received in 10 years of mail art exchanges! I am so grateful to have been on the receiving end of your talents.

Monastelar on Jan 19, 2017:

what can i say? Today i got your nice and lovely envelope, full of marvelous Pcs, stickers, photos of dogs. Thanks you so much!!! was really really really nice from your side and i loved!!!

<3 thousands and thousands <3 for you

chabbywabbit on Jan 13, 2017:

I was surprised that i got it so fast too!! I'm still waiting for some of my earlier swaps to arrive from NOV2016...

Thank you so much for thinking of me when you pack the letter!

BubbLeGumGirLie on Jan 7, 2017:

Danke für die Buttons :)! Ich hab mich richtig gefreut deinen Brief in der Post zu finden :)! Ich mag es, wenn Leute spontan an mich denken ;)! <3

bigmamabird on Dec 27, 2016:

Hey! A surprise bird envelope full of fun German ephemera landed on my doorstep today... Thanks! I love it all and am so very impressed with the stamp you've created. Thanks for the swap invite, I'm going to go check it out now... Happiest New Year wishes to you!

Smiley69 on Dec 22, 2016:

I received your piece of writing for the "Image as a Writing Prompt" swap today! Very clever poem...giant invisible dentist with dentures LOL. Thanks for the pretty ephemera too. Merry Christmas 🎄

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